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New South Wales - Organisation

Spastic Centre Country Children's Hostel (1948 - c. 2007)

  • It was built as a place for spastic children, and in its building light and color riot - and here the cerebral palsied child is King!

    It was built as a place for spastic children, and in its building light and color riot - and here the cerebral palsied child is King!, c. 1957 - c. 1967, courtesy of The Spastic Centre.
    Details

From
1948
To
c. 2007
Categories
Children's Home, Disability Institution, Home and Hostel
Alternative Names
  • McLeod House
  • New South Wales Hostel for Country Children
  • The Spastic Centre The Spastic Centre

The Spastic Centre Country Children's Hostel, also known as McLeod House and the New South Wales Hostel for Country Children, was a hostel for country children with cerebral palsy run by The Spastic Centre. A pilot hostel was established in Mosman in 1948 and a purpose-built facility opened in Allambie Heights in 1957. State wards were sent to this home. In 2007 the Centre was still providing residential services, possibly including children. In 2011 the organisation changed its name to Cerebral Palsy Alliance.

Details

The Spastic Centre was established in 1945 by a group of parents led by Neil and Audrie McLeod, whose daughter had cerebral palsy, which was then referred to as 'spastic paralysis'. It was the first organisation of its type in the world. The McLeod's and a group of volunteer parents started a treatment centre in a borrowed house in Queen Street, Mosman, before moving to the new premises at Allambie Heights from 1953 until 1957.

The Spastic Centre preferred to work with families, but it was very difficult for country families who had children with cerebral palsy to access services. The Spastic Centre established a pilot hostel in Glover Street in Mosman in 1948. A purpose-built hostel was built with voluntary labour and opened on 9 February 1958 by the Governor of New South Wales. It was called McLeod House, after the founders of the Centre. It contained a hospital.

A severe fire gutted The Spastic Centre's administration building of The Spastic Centre in 2007, but McLeod House was not damaged. In 2008 The Spastic Centre began raising funds to replace the building, which was by then considered unsuitable for therapy and accommodation for children.

Location

1948 - 1957
Location - Spastic Centre Country Children's Hostel was located at Glover Street, Mosman. Location: Mosman
1953 - c. 2007
Address - Spastic Centre Country Children's Hostel was located at 187 Allambie Road, Allambie Heights. Location: Allambie Heights

Publications

Online Resources

Photos

It was built as a place for spastic children, and in its building light and color riot - and here the cerebral palsied child is King!
Title
It was built as a place for spastic children, and in its building light and color riot - and here the cerebral palsied child is King!
Type
Image
Date
c. 1957 - c. 1967
Publisher
The Spastic Centre

Details

State wards at Spastic Centre, Allambie Heights
Title
State wards at Spastic Centre, Allambie Heights
Type
Image
Date
March 1978
Source
State Library of New South Wales

Details

Nothing Is Impossible: Adventures in cerebral palsy
Title
Nothing Is Impossible: Adventures in cerebral palsy
Type
Document
Date
2013
Source
Cerebral Palsy Alliance

Details

Sources used to compile this entry: 'Fire guts Spastic Centre', abc.net.au, ABC News, 16 December 2007, http://www.abc.net.au/news/2007-12-16/fire-guts-spastic-centre-office-in-sydney/989798; Raising the Roof: A new building at Allambie Heights, a new vision for our future, please help us rebuild, The Spastic Centre, 2007, http://socialventureconsultants.com/svc-site//wp-content/uploads/2014/02/Raising-the-Roof-Case-for-Support.pdf; 'A media release from the Premier - NSW Government announces $200,000 for Cerebral Palsy Alliance', in Media Releases, Families and Community Services: Ageing, Disability and Home Care, 20 May 2011, http://www.adhc.nsw.gov.au/about_us/media_releases/2011mr/a_media_release_from_the_premier_-_nsw_government_announces_$200,000_for_cerebral_palsy_alliance; Cerebral Palsy Alliance [formerly The Spastic Centre]: Our History, Cerebral Palsy Alliance, https://www.cerebralpalsy.org.au/who-we-are/history/; McLeod, Neil, Nothing Is Impossible: Adventures in cerebral palsy, The Spastic Centre, 1986, https://www.cerebralpalsy.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/Nothing-is-impossible.pdf.

Prepared by: Naomi Parry